A Data Center in South Korea and a Refurbished Georgian Theater: 10 Unbuilt Projects Submitted by our Readers

A Data Center in South Korea and a Refurbished Georgian Theater: 10 Unbuilt Projects Submitted by our Readers

Highlighting proposals presented in international competitions, this week’s selection of Best Unbuilt Architecture combines various functions, diverse conceptual approaches, and innovative ideas. Submitted by our readers, these projects include an awarded pavilion in Vietnam, a cantilevered-bridge proposal in New York, and a sustainable botanical center in Poland, amongst others from all over the globe.

With a lot of projects coming in from China, we have compiled in this roundup, a design for a children’s hospital and education building, as well as a national science center encompassing research buildings, laboratories, exhibition spaces, commercial use, and public facilities. On another hand, for the first time, a virtual project is featured, celebrating the LGBTQ community with a vessel of a layered and labyrinthine system of baths, showers, and pools.

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Read on to discover 10 projects presented in international competitions and their descriptions from the architects. 

Cloud Ring | Naver Cloud Data Center

BEHIVE Architects

Cloud Ring | Naver Cloud Data Center. Image Courtesy of BEHIVE Architects

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As the largest internet enterprise in Korea, Naver has an increasing demand of cloud services. We are inspired by the World Heritage Site of Korea, the Hahoe folk village, which was built within the embracement of mountains. The scheme takes the metaphor of the village and develops into a "learning community" protected by the data. Cooperating with consultants, we take on the technical challenges of data center creatively to achieve an integrated solution that is efficient and sustainable.

Special National Monument of President Ho Chi Minh Memorial Area

DE-SO Asia

Special National Monument of President Ho Chi Minh Memorial Area. Image Courtesy of DE-SO Asia

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The award-winning pavilion is a cultural and festive space aspiring to welcome and bring together people of all generations, to encourage exploration and discovery, serving as a valuable resource whose power is to empower and nurture the future’s vision. The community center is nestled between two forgotten rivers whose tracing shapes can still be seen in some places. Open and transparent pavilions are organized on a grid line perpendicular to the main axis. The water surface - a mirror reflecting the sky - is part of the landscape axis «linking» the two mountains, bringing coherence and unity to the memorial.

North Design Union Headquarters

SPIM Studio

North Design Union Headquarters. Image Courtesy of SPIM Studio

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Presented at the North Design Union Headquarters – Architecture Design Competition 2019, the design elaborates the social, cultural, and professional ambitions of the company by combining the workplace with other communal activities. Our new building echoes the aspirations of a modern organization, mediating between local and global, private and public, collective and individual, formal and informal, and in doing so establishing its dynamic identity.

Shenzhen Children’s Hospital and Science & Education Building

B+H Design

Shenzhen Children’s Hospital and Science & Education Building. Image Courtesy of B+H Architects

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B+H Architects, in a joint venture with East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI), were awarded first place in an international competition for the new Shenzhen Children’s Hospital and Science and Education Building. Emphasizing the importance of the collaboration between research, education, and patient care spaces in advancing pediatric healthcare in the region, the integrated design approach weaves a cohesive response from the site master-planning through to the architecture, medical planning, and interiors, with special emphasis on the integration of landscape design. Creating a unique micro-landscape within and around the building, from the ground floor to rooftop gardens, the project introduces the vertical “secret garden.

The Wave

Mograph Studio

The Wave. Image Courtesy of Mograph Studio

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The project called "The Wave", puts in place a ring that rises from the ground: a symbol of union, connection, as well as a completely open approach to the world, the old city, and the future. Located at the end of the old Silk Road, in Xi'an, China, this proposal is designed by Mograph Studio and is the winner of the first prize of the Manni Group Design Award. The new imagined station represents a meeting point between East and West, between future development and historical background.

Shenzhen Hong Kong Science and Technology Innovation Cooperation Zone

Shenzhen Yijing Architectural design & Shenzhen Cube Architecture Designing Consultants

Shenzhen Hong Kong Science and Technology Innovation Cooperation Zone. Image Courtesy of Shenzhen Yijing Architectural design Co.,Ltd & Shenzhen Cube Architecture Designing Consultants Ltd.

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This project is the first demonstration project of Shenfang Park in Shenzhen-Hong Kong Innovation Cooperation Zone. It aims to build a comprehensive national science center and is committed to creating a deep-seated “Science and Technology R&D, Laboratory, Supporting Service, Communication and Integration” function. The Smart Science and Technology Innovation Center will create a demonstration space for the future glamour image display, public exchange sharing, and science and technology industry gathering in the cooperation zone. The main functions are 100422m2 for research and development office, 46,000m2 for a research laboratory, 5000m2 for conference exchange exhibition center, 2000m2 for commercial use, and 3500m2 for public facilities.

Splash Palace

AAmp Studio

Splash Palace. Image Courtesy of AAmp Studio

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Presented part of the TSA Virtual Pride Floats competition, Splash Palace AAmp Studio’s contribution to the TSA’s call for Virtual Pride Float submissions to celebrate the LGBTQ community, in lieu of in-person festivities due to Covid-19. It is a vessel for expression, exploration, and delight! Its layered and labyrinthine system of baths, showers, and pool-scapes embraces ambiguity and openness. It’s a neutral setting of wet rooms and sensory experiences encourage visitors to bring life to space in their own way.

Meskheti Drama Theatre Refurbishment


Meskheti Drama Theatre Refurbishment. Image Courtesy of DMARK

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DMARK won a competition in Georgia for the refurbishment and expansion of the Meskheti Professional State Drama Theatre. The idea was to create a new space that would be a landmark in this area. Transforming existing massive façades and volume of the building into soft and contemporary architecture. A new white and artistic curtain facade was created for the main entrance of the building. During the daytime and night, it has different shadow effects due to its shape and inner reflective copper panels. Panoramic elevators covered with semi-transparent glass panels were added on both sides of the building.



Footbridge. Image Courtesy of HardingOstrow

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The Footbridge concept, intended for a site in Manhattan that connects to the existing High Line, marries the raw look of weathering steel with the shine of hammered stainless steel planters that hold trees and other vegetation. Stormwater runoff would drip into bespoke weathering steel bollards on the plaza below, creating an immersive visual and auditory effect in inclement weather. The innovative cantilevered pedestrian bridge and the elevated park is a concept by Rosannah Harding and Matthew Ostrow of HardingOstrow, winner of the 2020 Forge Prize.

Botanical Centre in Zabrze

Studio BB

Botanical Centre in Zabrze. Image Courtesy of Studio BB

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Awarded the PLGBC Green Building Awards 2020, the project assumes the ecological approach to sustainable design: photovoltaic cells were proposed and movable panels for controlling the temperature. An important aspect of the design is nature: a green roof and beehives were designed. The building focuses on education and development: the educational room is a place for various presentations and lessons as well as planting attempts. Everyone takes an active part in the development of the center, which provides a zone for seed segregation, seedling care, and propagation.


We highly appreciate the input from our readers and are always happy to see more projects designed by them. If you have an Unbuilt project to submit, click here and follow the guidelines. Our curators will review your submission and get back to you in case it is selected for a feature.

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About this author
Cite: Christele Harrouk. "A Data Center in South Korea and a Refurbished Georgian Theater: 10 Unbuilt Projects Submitted by our Readers" 17 Jun 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/941802/a-data-center-in-south-korea-and-a-refurbished-georgian-theater-10-unbuilt-projects-submitted-by-our-readers> ISSN 0719-8884

North Design Union Headquarters. Image Courtesy of SPIM Studio


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